The arrest of Journalist and Peaceful Activist Kamal Shaykhu

Syrian Authorities are Committed to Arresting Journalists as a Systematic Policy

SCM –Damascus-Syria – July 9th 2013 – Syrian journalist and peaceful activist Kamal Shaykhu, 34 years old, has been arrested by the Criminal Security Department in Damascus. The contact with Shaykhu was lost on Friday 28/06/2013 in Damascus, where his family member confirmed that the last contact with him was on that day.

Kamal Sheikhois a blogger and journalist from Derbassiyeh ,Hasakah Governorate in Syria ,born in 1978, a third year student at Faculty of Letters, Department of Sociology,Damascus University. He writes articles in a several Arab websites, including “All for Syria” and “ِAlwarif”.

Kamal Sheikho Was arrested for the first time by the Syrian security forces on 23 6 2010 in the Syrian-Lebanese border while trying to leave the country, then he was sent to the Second Criminal Court in Damascus on charges of “spreading false news that could debilitate the morale of the nation” and a public hearing for trial was set on 7/3/2011, then Sheikho started a hunger strike, which led to the deterioration of his health, the Syrian authorities soon agreed to release him.

Later it Sheikhowas of the journalists who tried to cover the sit- inof the political prisoners familiesin front of the Interior Ministry in Damascus on 15 3 2011, but he was arrested along with many of the Syrian Journalists who were there to cover the event and then he was released after the Syrian government amnesty decree.

The Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression(SCM) condemns the Syrian authorities continuation of its fierce campaign against journalists, activists and media workers, which included enforced disappearances, arbitrary detention, torture and even direct targeting of the lives of media activists, what turned Syria to the most danger place for media workers for the second year (2012-2013), According to reports by international organizations interested in the freedom of opinion and expression and human rights.

SCM also holds the Syrian authorities responsible for the safety and securing the life of Kamal Shaykhu, and calls to release him immediately and unconditionally, and all journalists and prisoners of conscience detained in the Syrian prisons. Since more than two years the Syrian media story has been turning around itself, and the fight against journalists and media institutions as a Systematic policy of the Syrian authorities and against anyone who tries to transfer any image that does not match the story of the official mediaoutlets, and on the ground theviolence is growing in the Syrian streets, as well as the split of Syrian community and the aggravation of People anger.